Mexico’s National Miner’s Union Again Threatens To Take Over Cananea Mine

By Murphy Woodhouse
Published: Wednesday, July 17, 2019 - 3:53pm
Updated: Thursday, July 18, 2019 - 8:51am

Buenavista del Cobre
Murphy Woodhouse/KJZZ
The Buenavista del Cobre copper mine is right outside Cananea, Sonora.

Unless the Mexican government takes dramatic actions, members of a miner’s union are again threatening to take over one of the country’s largest mines.

Section 65 of Mexico’s National Miner’s Union wants the federal government to rescind Grupo Mexico’s concession at the massive Buenavista del Cobre mine in Cananea, Sonora, near the Arizona border. It’s one of the most important copper mines in Mexico. If that and other demands aren’t met, they said they’ll take it over at the end of July.

“Time is running out,” union spokesman Antonio Navarrete said. “I believe we’ve been very tolerant and respectful of the new government.”

In recent months, Section 65 had called off similar threats as negotiations with government officials proceeded.

Section 65 went on strike in 2007 and effectively closed down the mine for several years. After that strike was broken, Grupo Mexico restarted operations in 2010. A new union began representing its workers in 2011.

A representative said the company did not yet have a response to the latest threat.

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